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03-23-2016, 01:51 PM   #1
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Is the Vivitar 24mm f2 PKA as good as the Vivitar 28mm f2 PKA (Close-focus by Komine)

I have been offered this lens and would like to know if anyone has experience with it. There is no review at the Lens Review section. I appreciate your help. Thanks, Pepe

03-23-2016, 04:02 PM   #2
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I found reviews (by 7 owners) here on PF under lenses > third part lens reviews > Vivitar > prime lenses, 18th lens down the list. Those reviews are a little mixed but generally positive, indicating a lens of fair to good quality. Off this forum I found a private review that called it "soft" "hazy" and "low contrast." So how good may depend on the individual copy, or the standards of the person evaluating the lens as none of these reviews is based on a standard procedure.

Last edited by WPRESTO; 03-23-2016 at 04:07 PM.
03-23-2016, 04:11 PM   #3
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be careful of lenses from that time period manufactured by cosina i think bc of age related manufacturing defects. stick w komine i think. i have a komine vivitar 28mm 2.8 pka close focus and it is remarkably sharp. the only thing i dont like are the colors/contrast arent pentax colors/contrast im used to. otherwise the lens is possibly the sharpest i own.

---------- Post added 03-23-16 at 07:15 PM ----------

it was kiron im sorry not cosina thta had problems. cosina came later i think and arent as well regarded for their optics. the reviews on kirons said they may have been optically better but the problems outweighed the benefit. look at the reviews for the 28 2.8's it explains it
03-23-2016, 04:48 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by elementdtlop Quote
be careful of lenses from that time period manufactured by cosina i think bc of age related manufacturing defects. stick w komine i think. [...] it was kiron im sorry not cosina thta had problems. cosina came later i think and arent as well regarded for their optics. the reviews on kirons said they may have been optically better but the problems outweighed the benefit. look at the reviews for the 28 2.8's it explains it
I think "the word on the street" suggests that old Kiron lenses are often likely to have gummy diaphragm blades, probably due to a poor original lubricant, and there may have been even a few instances of element clouding from outgassing from Kiron lubricants. Undoubtedly this is not universally true. In any event, a properly CLA'ed Kiron lens can easily be reborn. [I personally have never had sticky aperture blades on any of my Kiron-made Vivitars.]

As for Cosina, it has made perhaps a number of less than stellar lenses, often under contract for other companies. I suspect that it is unlikely that Cosina would spend extra money on its own to better the specs for a lens design intended by the client company to be an inexpensive lens. OTOH, Cosina has made some good lenses, too -- e.g., it also makes some of the latest Zeiss lenses, and they're nothing to sneeze at.

Finally, regarding Komine lenses, they have made a number of very high quality lenses for Vivitar that speak highly of that lens builder.

03-23-2016, 07:14 PM   #5
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I think Cosina also made the lamented Voigtlander 125mm macro and the rest of that series..

ANOTHER WARNING: K-mount lenses sometimes have a rigid bar medial and parallel to the diaphragm operating lever to protect the lever when when the lens is not mounted. Some aftermarket manufacturers installed a very long guard that interferes with mounting the lens, in fact makes it impossible to mount the lens on any Pentax DSLR.
03-23-2016, 07:30 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by WPRESTO Quote
ANOTHER WARNING: K-mount lenses sometimes have a rigid bar medial and parallel to the diaphragm operating lever to protect the lever when when the lens is not mounted. Some aftermarket manufacturers installed a very long guard that interferes with mounting the lens, in fact makes it impossible to mount the lens on any Pentax DSLR.
Yes. But, it can generally be shortened (or even removed totally), often fairly easily.
03-23-2016, 07:36 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pepe Guitarra Quote
I have been offered this lens and would like to know if anyone has experience with it. There is no review at the Lens Review section. I appreciate your help. Thanks, Pepe
Hi Pepe,

Wide open that lens is soft and dreamy, almost a special use lens. But stopped down a little it is really quite sharp with nice rendering. The 28/2 CF performs significantly better wide open, although stopped down they are pretty similar.

Good luck!
03-24-2016, 12:09 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nick Siebers Quote
Hi Pepe,

.......

Good luck!
Yes, it's a piece of luck. There was a time I felt a great love to the older wide-angles.
And have found that they notably differ from piece to piece.

03-24-2016, 05:36 PM   #9
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Thanks everyone for their comments. I already got the lens, it is mint and clean. So, there is no faulty characteristics that can make this lens behave erratically. So, let's see what I got. I took it for a ride around the house on my K3 (I will get the effect of a 36mm lens). I also took my Leica M (FF) with my stellar lens from the 1950s, the W-Nikkor-C 35mm f1.8 ltm to compare. I shot five subjects wide open (F2 for Vivitar, and F1.8 for Nikkor) and at f5.6. I will upload the results later on. However, here are my observations: The Vivitar 24/2 PKA is a close focus (30 cm, or 12" min.) with nice bokeh and relatively good resolution wide open. It is "Dreamy" ( low contrast and spherical aberrations) wide open, which could not be bad if you want some special effects with close subjects. Stopped down is just a regular very good lens. The Leica M9 and the Nikkor is one of the best combos and produces real nice shots. You will be the judge. I believe the level of quality of the Vivitar is good, but it does not match the Leica/Nikkor set. Please see for yourself and provide your input on this thread. If you have any advice, please go ahead and share. One of the things I am experimenting now is the use of a larger hood, and CPL filter to eliminate some of the stray light, especially during sunny days.

Vivitar@f2



Nikkor @f1.8



Vivitar @f5.6



Nikkor@f5.6



Vivitar @f2



Nikkor @f1.8



Vivitar @f5.6



Nikkor @f5.6





Vivitar @f2



Nikkor @f1.8



Vivitar @f5.6



Nikkor @f5.6

Last edited by Pepe Guitarra; 03-25-2016 at 06:54 AM.
03-24-2016, 07:53 PM   #10
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Well, in the portrait shots, the woman smiles more for the Vivitar than for the Nikkor, so that has to count for something, right?

03-24-2016, 08:00 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by fwcetus Quote
Well, in the portrait shots, the woman smiles more for the Vivitar than for the Nikkor, so that has to count for something, right?

She still thinks that the Leica is a cheap point and shoot. She believes Pentax is the best.
03-25-2016, 01:53 AM   #12
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The nikkor is quite impressive !
03-25-2016, 04:24 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pepe Guitarra Quote
She still thinks that the Leica is a cheap point and shoot. She believes Pentax is the best.
Har !!!

Seriously, though, the Vivitar certainly did OK, but the Nikkor did impress me a bit more.

Thanks for the interesting test.
03-25-2016, 06:50 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by fwcetus Quote
Har !!!

Seriously, though, the Vivitar certainly did OK, but the Nikkor did impress me a bit more.

Thanks for the interesting test.
Well, Nikkor/Leica! I think the VIvitar will do well with the Pentax K-1. Here is a sample of what the Leica/Nikkor duo can do:







---------- Post added 03-25-16 at 07:12 AM ----------

The SMC Takumar 24/3.5 ain't bad either:




Or the Pentax-A 24/2.8:






---------- Post added 03-25-16 at 07:22 AM ----------



OMG! I forgot that I had the Vivitar (KIRON) 24/2.......! Time to start selling some of this stuff!


Here is a shot wide open (I do not know why i shot a seascape wide open and against the sun!!!):




.....................time to start selling some of this stuff....!

Last edited by Pepe Guitarra; 03-25-2016 at 07:24 AM.
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